Thursday, March 15, 2018


Bill & me
First Nations businessman Bill Adsit delivered a powerful presentation at Tuesday's Leader Impact Luncheon at the Doubletree by Hilton in downtown Regina.

Born in Northern B.C., Bill (originally named "Belfry") was orphaned by the age of seven and found himself in a residential school where he endured sexual abuse, physical abuse and emotional abuse. Over the years he would bounce around several communities in Western Canada before winding up in jail on multiple occasions.

It was during his last stint in Corrections that he made the decision to walk down God's path, because everything else he'd tried hadn't worked.

"The Bible says God is a Father to the fatherless," Adsit told the crowd. "That was me. And although I never really believed God was there for me while I was suffering in the residential school, I never forgot the idea that God is there for you when you need Him."

So, like most who make that similar choice in life, Bill's life began to turn around for the better almost immediately.

He didn't have his Grade 12 but he was accepted at Trinity Western College and later the University of Alberta. The rest, as they say, is history. Adsit went on to have a long career in the public service but is also a multimillionaire businessman who sits on the Board of BC Hydro.

In fact his bio states:

"Bill Adsit is a member of the Tahltan Nation and was the President and CEO from 2004 to 2013. He currently lives in Sherwood Park, Alberta and works in Dease Lake and Vancouver, British Columbia. He has a Bachelor of Commerce Degree from the University of Alberta. After serving 37 years in the Canadian Military, Transport Canada, Revenue Canada and Industry Canada, he retired in 2004."

Adsit now travels the country speaking at Leader Impact events and to other groups.

His speech had several powerful points, but was sprinkled with a few anecdotes which had the room in stitches.

One of the key points of his 25-minute address was the advice "Don't be a victim of your circumstances. There's always help available out there to anyone who needs it."

Looking at his thousand-dollar outfit on Tuesday, it was hard to believe Bill was orphaned with just the clothes on his back as a little boy. As they say, don't judge a book by its cover.

I asked him afterwards if he's currently sober and he replied, "I still have the odd glass of wine now and again, but I haven't been drunk in years."

Hey, whatever works. Obviously it's working for Bill Adsit.


Sunday, February 18, 2018


As someone who's very open about the fact I'm in Recovery - or "achieved sobriety" - I get asked many questions on a daily basis about the disease of Alcoholism. In the just-past three years since I made the "life change", I've learned SO MUCH about what was afflicting me my whole adult life, and for a lot of my teen years.

This blog was designed to help people; whether they are battling addictions themselves, or their loved ones or co-workers who seek a deeper understanding of the Disease of Addiction.

I'd also like to thank Saputo Dairy's Milk2Go Sport for coming on board with sponsorship. They believe in what I'm doing.

So here goes:


That decision was made for me. After several failed attempts at quitting drinking (on my own), I had eventually quit quitting and gave up on myself. When I'd made the decision that I was a lost cause, the roof caved in pretty quickly and I hit rock bottom on January 26/2015.

So it was then that my bosses staged an Intervention and a document was shoved in front of me that said if I didn't get help for my drinking, I would be terminated. That was a very emotional day. They weren't giving up on me, but they'd had enough of my crap.

Over the years in sobriety, I've seen it over and over again; people don't quit drinking or abusing drugs until push-comes-to-shove.

I'm not fond of a lot of the sayings that are popular in Recovery but there are a few that are really true. One of my favourites is:

Nothing Changes If Nothing Changes

For me, it was Hammer Time.


Of course! That's why they call this a lifelong battle.

I was in Mexico just a few weeks ago and on the first day of the trip a conversation was going on in my head that went like this:

RIGHT EAR: "This is an all-inclusive resort! It would be a shame if you didn't have a few drinks!"

LEFT EAR: "But you don't want just a few drinks. You want a lot of drinks, and then people will know you're smashed."

RIGHT EAR: "Who cares! We'll figure that out later. Let's just start with a few drinks and see what happens!"

LEFT EAR: "There's a lot of people back home who are counting on you and looking up to you. You can't let them down."

RIGHT EAR: "........"

I never thought about drinking for the rest of the trip after that conversation in my head. We had a fabulous time!

But I'll never forget at one support group meeting I was in, an oldtimer who had over 40 years sobriety told us that he had a "drinking dream" the night before (a dream in which you are drinking).

I've had those dreams too. I thought to myself, "Oh man! I'm going to have this damned disease FOREVER!"

But you know what? Of all the lifelong incurable diseases that are out there, I'll take Alcoholism 10 times out of 10. If I abstain from it, I can have an excellent life.


Does my life look boring to you?

I'll tell you what's NOT boring!:
- Not having to apologize for your behaviour.
- Not being in fights with my wife over my drinking, or anything else for that matter.
- Remembering everything that happened the night before, and what was said by everyone.
- Having peoples' trust.
- Not having to line up a ride, an expensive cab, an Uber, etc.
- Having my sh*t together.
- Being invited to great events rather than being uninvited because no one wanted me around for fear of what I might do or say.
- Waking up everyday not knowing what's going to happen in my life, but knowing it's going to be extra special because I work every 24 hours to be the best person I can be.

I don't think there's any substance in the world that could replicate that rush of adrenaline and wave of good feelings that I get everyday.


Because you're addicted to it. You. Love. It.

It's not about willpower or intelligence. When Alcoholism or Addiction has you in its clutches, it's very difficult to be aware of anything else in your life.

On a daily basis I see people choose alcohol or drugs over their families or job. Sometimes I can't understand how someone could make that choice and then I'm reminded that at one point in my life, I would've chosen alcohol over everything so I get it.

Those stories rarely end well.


That's still a very clear moment for me.

It was in my Addiction Counselor's office and he told me I had a disease. I snapped and screamed, "No it's not! You can't take a pill for it and it goes away! It's not a tumor that you can have removed!"

He calmed me down and explained that Alcoholism has been recognized as a disease since the 1950's by the American Medical Assocation. He said, "It's a Mental Illness, Rod. You have it."

In that moment, my life changed.

I realized that with daily care, I could beat this.

So based on the daily battle, I am 1118-0 against Alcohol.


For someone not battling Addiction or any other Mental Illness (Anxiety, Depression, O.C.D., etc.), I know the concept of One Day At A Time can be very hard to grasp.

I wear a bracelet with that mantra and when "Earthlings" or "Normies" ask me what that means, they act like it's written in Chinese. They just don't understand.

In simple terms, it's a daily battle against your demons because the sons-of-bitches never go away.

But if you do daily things to arrest them or keep them at bay, you've at least got a chance.

I truly feel that if you can quit for a day, you can quit for a lifetime.


Let me first say that when I first got into Recovery, all of the things I'm about to say sounded like complete BS. Very flaky. But as each day went by and I eventually came out of the Alcoholic Fog, I noticed the people around me were having great success in Recovery using methods like these.

Here are some of them:
- Upon awakening, I say this prayer aloud, "I arise, Oh Lord, to do thy will". It's the simplest, shortest prayer for a dummy like me to remember. Early on if I'd forgotten to say it in the morning, I'd say it as soon as I remembered. Now, it's automatically the first thing in my head.
- Because of the extensive Cognitive Behavioural Therapy I've received from world-renowned yogi Sadhguru, I repeat this phrase aloud, "I awake to create a loving world."
- I repeat outloud the following Affirmations: "I am Happy. I am Safe. I am Healthy. I have Peace. I am Strong."
- I then read a short daily reading from two Apps: My Spiritual Tookit and The Secret.
- This whole process only takes about 1-2 minutes.
- I don't go three days without working out, and try to go daily at Evolution Fitness.
- I go to at least one meeting per week.
- As you'll see, most of this stuff is completed by 10:00 am and I'm ready to tackle the world with strength, confidence and a great frame of mind.
- In the evening, I'm able to fall asleep within seconds using the art of Meditation.
- When my mind and heart are racing and I can feel Anxiety building up inside me like a hurricane, I automatically go into Meditation. My awareness immediately focuses on the NOW, and the realization that all is perfectly fine in my life at that specific moment.
- I go to a weekly Yoga class and will for the rest of my life. It's great for the body but even better for the mind.
- I have successfully trained my mind by doing these daily rituals without fail. IT WORKS.

*Recently a lady asked me what her husband (a problem drinker) could do to slow down his mind and not have to reach for the bottle. I mentioned some of these rituals and she said, "Oh he'll never do that."

My response?: "Fine. Keep struggling then."


Absolutely not! Some of my best friends and associates work in the beer industry. As a matter of fact, beer companies are some of the biggest sponsors of the sports teams, leagues, and broadcasts that I'm associated with. Coors Light sponsors my sports blog and radio show!

It would be career suicide for me to tell the whole world not to drink. The simple fact is some of us just can't handle it.

Addictions and Alcoholism are a personal problem.

I heard a guy once complain that there should be no strip clubs because he's a sex addict and that cost him his family, job and finances. That's similar to saying there should be no casinos because you're hooked on gambling and have no money for groceries or rent.

That's your problem, not everybody else's.

Drinking was my problem and mine alone.

I will never, ever judge other people for their personal choices (unless they live under my roof) and that's mostly because I hated being judged for so many years.

Do what you want! But if and when the partying becomes a problem, look me up.


One of North America's top sober coaches was attending a meeting I was at and heard me sharing. He had no clue who I was or what I did for a living.

He checked me out and called a few hours later asking if I'd be interested in working with him. He said it's clear that, for some reason, people listen when I speak. I jumped at the chance but he said I had to get some education in the field so I earned a Diploma as a Drug & Alcohol Treatment Specialist.

This spring I'll officially be an Interventionist after receiving training from Hightower Associates in Orange County, CA.

It's progressing very rapidly and that's no surprise because the Addiction Crisis is out of control on this continent.

Surprise, surprise, I deal almost exclusively with athletes and broadcasters battling Addictions.
That's right in my wheelhouse.

To see someone get their job back, or their family, or their LIFE, and to know you had a hand in it is the greatest feeling I've ever had in my life. BAR NONE.

Some say this is my calling in life but I still feel I'm pretty good at broadcasting football and hockey games. That gives me great pleasure too.

The two careers intertwine beautifully.


I know I won't drink today.

I don't want to.

Twitter: @pedersenrecover
Instagram: @pedersenrecovery

Monday, February 12, 2018


We're back for Round 2 of the Pedersen Recovery Rodcast!

As we continue to bring together the worlds of Recovery and professional sports, we chat on this episode with All Star NHL goaltender Clint Malarchuk.

We're also proud to announce the Rodcast is sponsored by Fine Foods and Saputo Dairy's Milk2Go Sport! To perform like a Pro you need to recover like a Pro.

Clint Malarchuk is a product of Grande Prairie, Alberta and played in the WHL with the Portland Winterhawks before being drafted in the 7th Round of the NHL Draft by the Quebec Nordiques.
Clint was in the NHL between 1981-1992 with the Nordiques, Sabres and Capitals and was named an NHL All-Star.

He also was the victim of one of the most tragic events in NHL history when his throat was slashed by an opponent's skate and he nearly bled to death at the Auditorium in Buffalo. That was one of many traumatic events Clint has experienced in his life and he turned to alcohol to "self-medicate" with disastrous consequences.

Clint also wrote the book The Crazy Game in which he tells stories from the crease but also of his lifelong battle with Mental Illness.

Listen to Clint's interview here, and hopefully you find some inspiration like I did from Clint's story!

Rod & Clint at Recovery Day Regina

Saturday, February 3, 2018


By: Ashleigh Mattern,

Rod Pedersen has many memories of past Super Bowl parties, but not all of those memories are good — and that's why he's brought a new way to celebrate the big game to Regina fans who have struggled with alcohol addiction.

"Super Bowl was always not just a football game — it was a reason to drink, to be honest with you, for a guy that was suffering from alcoholism and active alcoholism," said Pedersen, who recently celebrated his third year sober.

The voice of the Saskatchewan Roughriders for the past 20 years, Pedersen said he knew he had to change when his workplace staged an intervention.

Being sober doesn't mean an end to having fun, though, so when Pedersen heard about Sober Bowl parties, he was intrigued.

"I'd still like to have a Super Bowl party. Why can't we have sober one with no alcohol?"

Sober Bowl parties are being hosted in cities like New York, Houston, and Minneapolis, and now Pedersen is bringing the idea of an alcohol-free Super Bowl celebration to Regina.

"We need these in Saskatchewan. We need to bring families together for a sporting event like this, and make it safe and know that they're going to drive home. We have this embarrassing stat of the highest drunk driving [rate] in the nation — like, very embarrassing."

Featuring a nacho and chili bar, Regina's Sober Bowl party will be held on Sunday at Tony Roma's Restaurant on Albert Street. Tickets are $30 for adults and $20 for kids, and the money raised will go to Oxford House, a sober-living facility for people who are newly out of treatment.

"It's just a party to watch the football game, that's all it is," Pedersen said. "Nothing too extravagant."

Thursday, January 18, 2018


NFL cities New York, Houston and Minneapolis are holding their annual Sober Bowl parties on February 4 and now the popular event is coming to Canada!

The inaugural Sober Bowl Canada party will be held at Tony Roma's Regina on Sunday, February 4 as football fans are invited to a family-friendly, alcohol-free event to watch the NFL's Big Game.

It's your chance to mingle with CFL personalities, enjoy a nacho and chili bar and win great prizes!

Tickets are advance sale only, and are $30 for adults and $20 for kids.

For ticket info or to purchase, email

Tuesday, January 2, 2018


Pro Football Hall of Famer and Person In Recovery Cris Carter is the debut guest on the inaugural edition of the Pedersen Recovery RODCAST with host Rod Pedersen.

The 8-time Pro Bowler and long-time ESPN and Fox NFL analyst gives a shockingly raw account of his history with Addictions and Mental Illness, and holds nothing back in this interview.

Carter answers with amazing candor and honesty:

- What's your Recovery story?

- What was life like before, and what's it like now?

- How do you deal with social pressures around drinking?

- What's your Self-Care regimen?

- What advice would you give the still-suffering Alcoholic or Addict?

- What advice would you give young people in the same position you were?

Listen to the show by clicking on the link below. If you have any suggestions for future podcast interviews, please email me or post in the Comment section!

For more information or sponsorship inquiries for Pedersen Recovery Inc., please email Director of Business Development Joe Gunnis at or Rod Pedersen at For more information on the Pedersen Recovery Right Place, Right Time Tour, click here.

Follow our Social Media links at:
Facebook: Pedersen Recovery Coaching Inc.
Twitter: @pedersenrecover
Instagram: @pedersenrecovery

The Pedersen Recovery RODCAST is produced by Jordan McRae. (@jmcraeradio)


Sunday, December 24, 2017


This column began in early-December in Los Angeles and ends in late-December back home in Saskatchewan. Hopefully it provides some insightful Holiday reading:

1 - We find ourselves back in the Los Angeles area for the first time since December of 2014. Once again, I'm hosting 60 sports fans and listeners of my radio show back in Canada and we've come to enjoy sun, ocean, and some NFL and NHL games. But navigating this week would turn out to be as rocky as trying to catch a wave along the Golden Coast.

2 - You see, the last time we were here, I was just six weeks away from hitting my rock bottom and getting into Recovery. Frankly a lot of that trip was a blur. I was in for quite a few surprises this time around; some pleasant and others not so pleasant.

3 - Shortly after landing at LAX, catching a tour bus to our hotel and grabbing a rental car, my wife and I set off to tour Newport Beach and find a nice place for supper. I was immediately hit with shockwaves ... WHAT FREEDOM! Not being handcuffed to the bottle or bellied up to a bar meant we were free to roam up and down the coast, roll the windows down and crank up the tunes! It hit me very early on this trip that we would have oodles and oodles of time to do whatever the heck we wanted and the freedom to do it whenever we wanted.

4 - Some are reading this and thinking: What's so special or different about that? That's because you've never battled Alcoholism and/or Addictions. See, in the past, once that plane landed I'd have been scouring the landscape for cold beer stores and dingy lounges that looked to have the best happy hours. It would have completely distracted me and, frankly, ruined Day 1 because I'd have already had several drinks on the plane, been unable to drive, and have found reasons to bicker with my wife.

This is all part of a blogpost or podcast I'll do in the future answering one of the most popular questions I get all the time: What does it mean to be Alcoholic? It means lots of things but topping the list is that booze is on your mind pretty much all of the time (in the mid-to-late stages of the disease). But you don't realize that until you're out from underneath its gargantuan grasp. (They call that 'coming out of the Alcoholic Fog').

5 - Just one more on this. Situated beside our hotel was a fabulous Outlet Mall (one of the best I've seen in America) and we spent an hour once we arrived. After we'd separately scoured the grounds for our favourite stores and then met up, I said to my wife, "You know in the past I'd have found the first lounge I could have and started drinking by now. By suppertime I'd be falling off my chair!"

She replied. "I know."

The thought pops into my mind that maybe she should write a guest column on this blog with her perspective on my drinking days.

Errrr, maybe not.

6 - Things were going along fantastically until the evening of Day 3 when, again, Alcoholism jumped up and grabbed my leg like a shark bite. Remember this is a vacation for everybody except me so there were a group of guys on a "Guys Trip". In the past, I'd have been in that group like a dirty shirt and these guys were nice enough to invite me out in the evenings most every night.

You have to understand that most times these days I can be out at functions and alcohol being present has absolutely no effect on me whatsoever. Do what you wanna do. But when you're in an old environment like this sports trip, panic attacks start to happen for an Alcoholic in Recovery.

I had three of them in Year 1 of my sobriety: 1) at an all-inclusive resort in Mexico, 2) in a sportsbar in Las Vegas, and 3) at an NFL game in Miami.

What happens? Well your heart races, your tongue gets dry and your palms get sweaty. When you're IN IT, the last thing you thing about is calling a friend in Recovery. I surely would've relapsed in those instances but I always had someone with me to make sure that didn't happen.

Initially it was humiliating to need a sober companion in Year 1 but it worked out as planned. I didn't fall in the trap.

Now, I don't put myself in those situations at all if I can help it.

7 - Even as it was this time around, I could feel my Anxiety level rising. But I reached out with text messages to three sober friends and the Anxiety totally went away. I didn't even need to tell these guys what I was going through. Just to hear from them and know that things were going great in their lives at the moment was enough to settle my storm.

So when there was a reception on Day 4 and pitcher after pitcher of ice cold beer was served up to our listeners after our radio show at Hooters, I politely excused myself to the sanctity of my hotel room.

Crazy perhaps, but if you haven't lived it, you'll never understand. And those guys who invited me out each evening certainly didn't mean any harm. They were just being nice.

That's why I'm writing these columns: to explain the disease to the "Normies" or "Earthlings" (people who don't suffer from it) and to provide strength to those who do.

8 - But you can't please everybody. I recently got a DM on Twitter from a guy who said he was on one of my trips to Dallas in 2012. He was sober 10 months at the time but said I bullied him for not drinking, and he seems to be holding onto a big resentment for that.

What can I say? That's classic Alcoholic behaviour and I don't think anyone wants to be reminded of their actions while drinking.

The Best Apology Is Changed Behaviour.

It's over. And being so open about my Recovery keeps me accountable.

Do you know how I know I won't relapse today?

I don't want to.

9 - Now we're back home and in the Holiday Season. I heard someone in Recovery once say that Grey Cup in late-November kicked off their "Drinking Season" which lasted all through the Christmas Holidays and right through till Super Bowl. I'd say that's true for a lot of people.

I chuckled this week because I'd heard tell of the same people at the same parties and bars kicking back and celebrating the Holidays. It sounded like they were having a helluva a lot of fun.

I chuckled because it was shocking to look back at how much my life has changed over the past three years while theirs hasn't (from what I can see from the outside).

I say more power to them. My life had to change, not theirs.

10 - That includes our next trip. We had initially planned to go to New Orleans for New Years but some football friends warned, "There's not much there to do other than drink and party. It's not for you."

Early in Recovery I'd have found a way to take some offense to that statement but that's just me being defensive. They're trying to help.

So, we switched gears. Mrs. P. and I are going to Miami over New Years and that'll include some time in the Florida Keys and on South Beach.

Life is amazing.




Bill & me First Nations businessman Bill Adsit delivered a powerful presentation at Tuesday's Leader Impact Luncheon at the Doub...